Published on Jul 20, 2018
Does collagen protein help you build muscle in the same way that other proteins do? It’s a pretty common question, and something that a lot of people wonder. And the thing is, there are so many collagen supplements out there right now, it leads us to believe that that is the case, that collagen does help us build muscle in the same way that other proteins do. Well, collagen is still a protein, and of course it still has an effect on protein synthesis, but it works in an entirely different way. What I want to do is I want to talk to you about how collagen works within the body when it comes down to building muscle or maintaining muscle, and I want to reference a couple of studies, so that you fully have an understanding of what’s happening.
It’s not like all proteins are created equal, and it’s not like all instances of life are equal. You see, we have to look at the given situation. Collagen has been proven to be a very good protein when it comes down to protein synthesis for someone that’s on a low protein diet. Now, before you shut off this video thinking that you’re not on a low protein diet, let me honestly say that if you’re doing anything like a ketogenic or a low carb diet, you should be on somewhat of a low protein diet in the first place, simply because that’s how the ketogenic diet works.
Now, if you’re looking just for good old fashioned muscle building and you’re not on a keto diet, collagen still has some benefits, and I’ll get to that in a minute. But for now, let’s talk about what collagen truly is. See, collagen is the most abundant protein within the human body, making up over 30% of the overall protein in our bodies to begin with, and it’s made up predominantly within what’s called the extracellular matrix. This extracellular matrix is involved in every tissue in the body and helps support every single cell that’s in our body. So collagen has some powerful functions, no matter what, whether it’s for your hair, your skin and your nails, whether it’s for muscle building, whether it’s for connective tissue, you name it, it’s involved in one way or another.
But the question is whether collagen actually contributes to you building some more muscle if you’re working out. Well, the British Journal of Nutrition took a deep dive on this, and I thought it was pretty interesting. So what they did is they took a look at 53 individuals, these were older men that were suffering from what is called sarcopenia. Sarcopenia is just a simple age related atrophy of the muscles, where you get older and your muscles start to shrivel up and go away. So it’s a good viable accelerated example to look at to see whether collagen can actually stop this process.
So what they did is, over the course of a few weeks, they split these 53 men into two groups, one group had a collagen supplement and the other group had a placebo. What they found is that those that had taken the collagen supplement had a significant decrease in fat and a significant increase in fat-free mass, meaning an increase in overall muscle tissue. So pretty powerful results right there.
I’ll see you next time,
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